Creating a Sample Child Care Rate Sheet
Creating a Sample Child Care Rate Sheet is a great way to ensure that your rates are fair to everyone in your child care program. This is especially important in situations when your program is struggling to meet the costs of maintaining a quality service. The information in this document can help you calculate your daily market rate and request a rate increase if necessary.
Calculating the Daily Market Rate
Using the CCTA, child care providers have the opportunity to earn an enhanced market rate. These rates are designed to be more than a tax break, but not so much that they overshadow the state’s other subsidies and tax credits. The enhanced rates are limited to the applicable market rate for each provider. They may be reimbursed for the cost of care provided to private pay families in excess of these rates. In addition to the aforementioned rates, LDSSs may establish optional enhanced market rates for legally-exempt group child care programs.
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A number of states opted for the enhanced market rate as their official state subsidy, with the exception of Illinois, a state that has yet to reap the benefits of the program. Among other things, LDSSs must update their authorizations and take steps to ensure accurate payments. LDSSs must also wait for system changes to allow for enhancements to the enhanced market rate. LDSSs will need to take the time to review each child care program’s financials to determine if they qualify for the program.
One of the requirements for the enhanced market rate is that a child care program must provide a minimum of three hours of care per day. This is a fairly basic requirement, but it does require the LDSS to reevaluate its calculations outside of CCTA. Its systems have not been updated to support the enhanced market rates, and LDSS may need to reimburse individual providers for their actual costs. The CCTA will not automatically calculate the enhanced rate for legally-exempt group child care programs, and it is not likely to do so. However, this does not mean that LDSSs will be unable to calculate the required payments.
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For the record, the CCTA has not deemed any particular child care program to be eligible for the enhanced market rate. It will, however, make the appropriate payments on a state-by-state basis. Moreover, if a program is deemed to be eligible for the enhanced rate, the CCTA will issue an issuance certificate to the eligible provider. Those interested in the subject are encouraged to consult the CCTA’s Web site. The enhanced market rates are expected to be in effect no earlier than May 1, 2019. This is not to say that the CCTA will not continue to provide subsidies to legally-exempt group child care programs, but it will not automatically calculate the enhanced rate.
A number of state LDSSs were notified of the study in the form of 19-OCFS-INF-03 on April 29, 2019, and they had two months to get their fiscal houses in order. To the credit of the CCTA, the data clean up process was thorough. The primary data set consisted of 7,330 providers. Of these, 4,237 providers remained in the final dataset.
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Comparison of Child Care Prices to Inflation
Increasing child care costs have been a major concern for families for years. They have accelerated faster than other basic family expenses, contributing to a growing squeeze on families’ budgets. The price of child care is now more than three times higher than the average inflation rate. In fact, in the past two years, the average annual cost of child care has exceeded the rate of inflation by more than 3 percent. A report released by Child Care Aware of America found that in some parts of the country, the price of childcare exceeds the cost of housing. The report estimates that the average price of child care will be over four percent higher in 2020 than it was in 2019.
The child care industry has been struggling for years. It has been hit hard by a pandemic, year-round wait lists, and a lack of qualified talent. It has also been affected by staffing shortages, which is putting upward pressure on prices. However, the price of child care is not likely to be able to increase quickly enough to keep up with the demand for child care. Nonetheless, some policies to address the issue might be beneficial.
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For example, President Biden’s Build Back Better (BBB) agenda included a proposal to increase access to child care by making all 3- and 4-year-olds eligible for universal pre-K. This would have helped to address the rising cost of child care by freeing up income for other uses. It also would have offset the inflation impact on family budgets.
In January, the rate of inflation was 2.1%. In addition, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that the price of child care in 2009 was $6,864. It will be interesting to see how the price of child care increases in the next few years.
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In the meantime, more than one-half of all Americans live in what is known as a “child care desert.” These are areas where there is a lack of high-quality, affordable child care available. Currently, the federal government provides subsidies for infant care. But these subsidies only cover a small portion of the total cost of care, and the true cost of care is much higher. This means that the federal government needs to provide funding at a level that will pay for the true cost of child care.
The BLS also calculated that the average hourly earnings of child care workers have increased at the same rate as nonsupervisory employees. This means that child care providers are getting by on razor thin margins, but they will have to raise wages to attract early educators. If the industry does not increase its wage rates, it could cause the prices of child care to rise even more.
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